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Thread: MiTT's 2011 RMAF Show Report

  1. #76

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    I, as well, would like to give Tim a fist bump for doing such a great job with his photos and descriptions. I don't know how you stay focused surrounded by all the music and eye candy. Kudos to you my friend. BTW, Hear No Evil is a brilliant name for an audio shop. With that name, I'm invisioning the best sounding match ups in audio gear. I hope they don't disappoint when you finally get there.

  2. #77

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    That machine is playing 1/2-inch demo versions of the Tape Project releases. Those who have heard it say the playback is premium stuff.

    Great coverage, thanks!

    Tj



    Quote Originally Posted by MiTT View Post
    VTL was playing a Tape Project version of Patricia Barber's "You and the Night and the Music" to great effect through the HUGE Sigfried mono blocks. These things must weigh 500 lbs. They made the equally HUGE TAD speakers seem less predominant in the room. With a nice Otari RTR as a source, along with a slew of dCS electronics providing digits, and a very impressive looking 3 box VTL pre amp; everything sounded, well, HUGE! I was fortunate enough to spend some time talking with VTL guru Bea Lam and was humbled by her knowledge of all things audio.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slowGEEZR View Post
    I'm currently uploading my 100 + pics onto my smugmug account. One thing I should mention is that, regardless of how good some of these systems were, they aren't even close to the real thing. After listening to some music on the IsoMike four channel recorded system and then hearing the artist play, it was clear that there is still a long way to go in the audio reproduction business.
    They never, ever will be the same as the real thing. Think about the simple case of a drum kit symbol. In order to reproduce it accurately, the transducer would have to occupy the same physical space and resonate in exactly the same way to get the correct dispersion and sonic characteristics. I think that is nigh on impossible thing to ask a domestic replay system to achieve - at least in this century.

    FWIW, the closest I have heard to convincing is Avantgarde Trios and basshorns.

    Anyway, mucho lookng forward to the link to the pics.

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    Thanks for the porn Tim. It looks like Justin has some serious competition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bernard View Post
    Thanks for the porn Tim. It looks like Justin has some serious competition.
    Nah.......

    Seriously though, Tim - good stuff. Credit where credit is due.
    Last edited by User211; 10-18-2011 at 11:18 AM.

  6. #81
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    Thanks for the great coverage Tim!
    My ML CLS IIz/Pass Labs/JL Audio system here: http://www.martinloganowners.com/for...ead.php?t=9676

  7. #82
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    Yep - great coverage. Thanks. Hope I can meet this standard with the Aussie Hi-Fi show THIS WEEKEND!

    Coverage forthcoming.
    Marantz 8300 SACD / Squeezebox Touch --> Audiolab M-DAC --> Copland CTA-305 --> Classé CA-101 --> MartinLogan Vista / Behringer DSP1124P --> Whise Profunder sub

    Click here to see my system

  8. #83

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    Hi all,

    Just a few thoughts on what I heard.

    The Devalliet unit ($18K) was quite special. Hope I spelled it correctly. Heard it in two rooms. An all in one attractive (shiny chrome finish), narrow box and all you need is a computer to provide the music.

    The Martin Logan Montis was demoed in a rather small room but the magic was clearly there. This is the Spire replacement. The glossy cherry finish was absolutely gorgeous. More importantly, the blend between the panel and woofer module, based on my limited listening, was quite seamless.

    In the MBL room, they were demoing the new 125 (replacement for the 121 I believe), which is the smallest speaker they make. I heard the previous model two years ago and it was stunning although they were set up in a much larger room. At this years show, the sound, to be polite, sucked. They were playing Mary Black / I Dream of Columbus on the "No Frontiers" CD. This is a gorgeous, moving song but through the MBL's, you would not know it. Based on my previous experience, my sense is that it was a room issue but who knows.

    Beside the Wilson Sasha and Vandersteen Model 7, the other major speaker manufacturer present was YG Acoustics. I heard the Ref ($120K), the Kipod Sig. 2 ($49K), and the Carmel ($17K), which is their newest, smallest and least expensive speaker in the YG line. I will admit my bias because I'm quite smitten with the YG house sound. No hint of bright, tinny sound. The Sig. 2, although small, had tremendous weight and body, while sounding transparent and effortless. The Carmel was the real surprise. Although quite small by floorstanding speaker standards, the sound belied its dimensions. A bit limited at the low end, but they sounded quite large with tremendous imaging and presence. I also had the chance to spend a bit of time with Yoav / YG's main man. Despite his earlier marketing approach, he is a humble, personable, engaging person.

    Also heard, in a very crowded room, the new Magico Q1. Mr. Wolf was present. They are essentially a smallish speaker on stands. The sound was pleasant but I was not sitting in a place to offer any meaningful comment. Probably would not win the prize for its size and price, which is $27K.

    Focal was demoing their second from the top speaker (approx $100K). With the large room and top flight gear, it sounded extremely musical, engaging and, again, effortless. What amazed me is how such a large speaker can disappear once the music starts.

    The Analysis Audio room, on the ground floor, sounded excellent as it has in the past.

    And now for the "you've got to be kidding" product. The Synergistic Research Art room tuning devices. Obscenely priced for their diminutive size ($3K), I sat through a demo where they removed a couple of resonator control devices in front of the bass module on the YG Kipod Sig. 2 and when they pulled all the devices from the wall and floor. A clear, audible deterioration in the sound quality when these devices were not present. I'm not competent to comment on the "science" but their impact (when in place) was very positive. In fact, every room I went to after the demo sounded somewhat flat and less than engaging.

    Some general comments. Lots of vinyl and lots of computer / server audio. In the music room, 80% of music / retail space was vinyl, 20% CD's.

    For those who have not attended this show, I would highly encourage you to do so. Many top flight manufacturers, all in one building, with a relatively small crowd (5,000 or so) in attendance. And you can meet and actually talk to the some of the eminent designers in high end audio.

    Gordon

  9. #84

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon Gray View Post
    In the MBL room, they were demoing the new 125 ....the sound, to be polite, sucked.
    Unfortunately, it did. Quite a letdown after hearing the big boy MBL's @ THE Show, which were utterly incredible.

    Also heard, in a very crowded room, the new Magico Q1. Mr. Wolf was present. They are essentially a smallish speaker on stands. The sound was pleasant but I was not sitting in a place to offer any meaningful comment. Probably would not win the prize for its size and price, which is $27K.
    Sitting in the sweet spot, I thought vocals were fantastic, but other aspects were merely very good. By comparison, the Evo MM Micros were terrific @ 1/10th the price.

    The Analysis Audio room, on the ground floor, sounded excellent as it has in the past.
    Gordon, I spent a ton of time there and concluded that they were highly variable - great or mediocre, depending upon the material played. Ultimately, I left disappointed.

    Just like THE Show, I thought Roger Sanders' room sounded superb - his speakers really do everything right. The other speakers I thought were killer: KEF Reference (moreso than the Blade!) and the Vandersteen V7.
    _____________________________________________
    MacMini+JRiver>Trinnov MC 8>Sanders ESL/nCore monoblocks/Parasound Halo>active tri-amped Emerald Physics EP2.7, JL f112

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    Thanks to all for the virtual tour - very nicely done!

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    Quote Originally Posted by RUR View Post
    Gordon, I spent a ton of time there and concluded that they were highly variable - great or mediocre, depending upon the material played. Ultimately, I left disappointed.
    Having heard them twice relatively recently, I think I concur with that viewpoint. However, with the small local shows we have in England, even that sort of performance can outshine a multitude of rooms with lesser kit in.

    MBLs sounding bad at shows I have not come across. But I have come across the big boy MBLs sounding very under-utilised in HK.

  12. #87
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    Everyone, here is the link to my RMAF pics.
    http://slowgeezr.smugmug.com/Music/R...697083_vMs77m6

    I can't believe how busy I've been since I got back, I just haven't had much time to do much commentary. If, after you browse my pics, there are any questions, please ask. I will be doing some more comments on my thread, so as to not hijack Tim's thread.
    - Steve You got fins to the left, fins to the right...Wilson WP8, Pass Labs XA-100.5, Pass Labs XP-20, BAT PK-V5, Soundsmith "The Voice" Ebony, TTW GEM V2, MacMini, Amarra, Ayre QB-9 DSD, X-CAN V-3, Sennheiser HD-535, Adona, PS Audio PPP, Mogami w/ Neutrik XLRs, Douglas speaker cable, GIK treatments.

  13. #88

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    Ken and Justin,

    Regarding the under performance of the MBL's and frankly, other rooms that I visited, I would question (absent a new manufacturer wanting to expose their product) the wisdom of showing up at all.

    I suppose it cuts both ways but, having not heard the MBL's properly set and given the price tag for admission, the uninitiated may come away with a strong negative opinion that is counter productive to the best interests of the company demoing their product.

    We all know show conditions are difficult but ......

    GG

  14. #89
    Senior Member slowGEEZR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon Gray View Post
    Ken and Justin,

    Regarding the under performance of the MBL's and frankly, other rooms that I visited, I would question (absent a new manufacturer wanting to expose their product) the wisdom of showing up at all.

    I suppose it cuts both ways but, having not heard the MBL's properly set and given the price tag for admission, the uninitiated may come away with a strong negative opinion that is counter productive to the best interests of the company demoing their product.

    We all know show conditions are difficult but ......

    GG
    That's certainly true as to my reaction of the YG speakers I had seen prior to this show. I just didn't get them, as they always sounded bad to me. This time, I was moved by their great sound. Go figure.
    - Steve You got fins to the left, fins to the right...Wilson WP8, Pass Labs XA-100.5, Pass Labs XP-20, BAT PK-V5, Soundsmith "The Voice" Ebony, TTW GEM V2, MacMini, Amarra, Ayre QB-9 DSD, X-CAN V-3, Sennheiser HD-535, Adona, PS Audio PPP, Mogami w/ Neutrik XLRs, Douglas speaker cable, GIK treatments.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slowGEEZR View Post
    That's certainly true as to my reaction of the YG speakers I had seen prior to this show. I just didn't get them, as they always sounded bad to me. This time, I was moved by their great sound. Go figure.
    True because there are just so many variables. Room, ancilliary equipment, the recordings being played etc etc. For that reason, it is actually really hard to come up with solid conclusions.

    In the case of the Omega, I think their perceived variability is due to their far from flat (and possibly deliberately tailored) frequency response, which was exposed during a recent UK press review. I say deliberately tailored because the technology used by Apogee measures pretty damned flat - so presumably this can be achieved using the Omegas similar, but not identical, tech.

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